Senior’s Minister visits Keremeos

Politicians looking for senior's input make the rounds of the Okanagan Similkameen

West Vancouver - Capilano MLA and MInister of State for Seniors Ralph Sultan speaks to a member of the Keremeos Senior's Centre along with local MLA John Slater on November 28 at the Senior's Centre

MLA John Slater accompanied Minister of State for Seniors MLA Ralph Sultan on a tour of senior facilities in the Boundary – Similkameen on November 28.

Keremeos Mayor Manfred Bauer joined the entourage in Keremeos, where Sultan and Slater paid a visit to the senior’s centre.

Sultan was appointed as Minister of State for seniors in September by Premier Christy Clark, with the expectation that he would bring the seniors’ voice directly to the table.

“I feel I have a personal understanding of senior’s isssues,”  said Sultan, who is turning 80 next June.

I’ve been attending briefings with the Ministry of Health, talking to various senior organizations like COSCO (Council for Senior Citizens of BC), the Alzheimer’s Society and Ombudsperson Kim Carter, and studying her report containing 176 recommendations for seniors –

over the last two months. So far I’ve covered 40 or 50 senior’s centres,” Sultan explained. “I’m here to listen and getting educated as well.”

Overall, Sultan said that it appears that seniors in B.C. are finding that life is good, but there are problems – looking ahead, Sultan noted that B.C. faced an increasing influx of seniors retiring to the  province, in addition to those already here – an increasingly larger proportion of the population.

“It’s no longer unusual to meet people 100 years old or more,” he said.

The big challenge facing the province, Sultan added, is keeping the 96  per cent of B.C. seniors currently living in their own homes, in their homes as their need personal services increase.

“The thrust of government will be to help provide those services – shovelling snow, shopping, light housekeeping duties, for instance – non-medical services  – so that we can reduce much higher medical expenses.

The province is currently looking at a three point plan to improve senior care in B.C.

“What is it that people need to keep living as they are? That ‘s an important question we are asking.

Number two – who will provide these services? The United Way is currently working with us to look at ways where seniors can help seniors,” Sultan explained.

“The third point is to plan with seniors, not for them – to figure out at the community level what will work,”’ he said.

The province currently spends one half of the health budget on seniors – with the health budget being half of the total provincial budget.

“That’s one out of every four dollars collected in the province going to senior care,” Sultan noted, adding that  health care spending was an expensive, delicate area of government in which to tread.

 

“Seniors are outspoken, they know the issues” Sultan concluded, “and they vote.

Politicians better pay attention.”

 

 

Just Posted

B.C. wine industry legend Harry McWatters dies

Among his accomplishments, McWatters founded the province’s first estate winery, Sumac Ridge Estate

$250,000 worth of property stolen from Penticton storage

Police are investigating after a possible theft on the weekend

Bizarre alleged assault trial where Coalmont’s only payphone destroyed

Not guilty plea to assault charges related to striking man in telephone booth with vehicle

UPDATE: Lightning causes three wildfires east of Osoyoos

It is believed the fires started by a lightning storm

Controversial anti-abortion film to be screened in Penticton

Unplanned will be shown at the Penticton Landmark theatre

Okanagan-based pop star Andrew Allen is back with a new band

Singer-songwriter Andrew Allen is bringing his new band home for a concert this Friday

Severe thunderstorm watch issued Okanagan Valley

Strong winds, rain, and lightning may be expected for Kelowna, Vernon, and Penticton

B.C. teacher suspended for professional misconduct

Grade 8 shop teacher admits to use of vulgar language and profanities toward students

Northern B.C. double homicide, suspicious death: A timeline of what we know

Two teens from Port Alberni are now wanted Canada-wide in connection to the three deaths

Okanagan man grows tomato with an… unusual shape

The man could only conclude that it was a decidedly “male” tomato.

Provincial health body refuses to release full findings of cancer triage system audit

Information and Privacy Commissioner asked to review redactions

Southern resident killer whale died of blunt trauma, likely from ship

J34 was found more than two years ago near Sechelt, but the necropsy findings have now been released

Supportive housing first step to healing: BC Housing CEO

Shayne Ramsay explains changes to Rutland’s McCurdy development

Central Okanagan motorcycle crash causes two impaired driving investigations

The driver’s injuries, although serious, are not believed to be life-threatening in nature

Most Read